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5 tips for finding a qualified home inspector

Purchasing your first home can be unbelievably exciting. It can also be stressful, however. For a variety of reasons, many Americans think it is a bad time to purchase a home. If others are not buying, though, you may find a great deal on a starter home or the house of your dreams. 

You do not want to buy a piece of property that is not structurally sound or has other serious problems. As such, you likely want to contract with a knowledgeable home inspector to uncover hidden issues. Here are some suggestions for finding one: 

1. Understand the process 

Home inspections are a decidedly hands-on process. That is, your inspector should spend between two and three hours at the property, looking at everything from the basement to the roof. Then, your inspector should prepare a comprehensive report that alerts you to any issues. 

2. Ask for referrals 

Your friends, family members and colleagues are excellent resources when choosing a home inspector. Because good inspectors often have some intangible qualities that are hard to quantify, asking for referrals is usually a wise approach. 

3. Check credentials 

In New York, home inspectors must obtain and maintain a license. Accordingly, before hiring one, you should make sure he or she has all the necessary licenses, certifications and insurance coverage. 

4. Think about specialization 

Not all home inspectors are right for every piece of property. Said another way, your inspector may have expertise limitations. Therefore, if your inspector indicates that he or she needs to bring in a specialist, find someone who has the right knowledge. 

5. Ask questions 

Your home inspection should not only offer an opportunity to find problems with a new home, but it should also help you learn about it. Therefore, try to accompany the inspector and ask him or her any questions you have. Then, read the report thoroughly, asking follow-up questions when necessary. 

A home inspection is a critical part of the home buying process. Because you want an inspection you can trust, you must work diligently to find the right inspector.

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